In a Nov. 5 letter to Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel, Hunter wrote “it has been brought to my attention that a payment was made to an Afghan intermediary who ‘disappeared’ with the money and failed to facilitate Bergdahl’s release in return.”

Hunter said “according to sources” the payment was made between January and February 2014 through Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC), a special operations command whose activities are mostly classified. 
Hunter said he recognized the “reluctance to describe the payment as a ransom,” and that the allegations of an unsuccessful payment is supported by JSOC’s pursuit of at least two lines of effort to get Bergdahl back — through a military rescue operation, and payment to his suspected captors and terrorist group Haqqani Network.

Hunter did not identify his sources.